The Ugandan government and the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees are calling on the donor community to extend $927 million to support the over 1.2 million refugees living in Uganda. But the appeal is complicated by the alleged misuse of previous contributions.
Located next to several countries in conflict, Uganda has become host to huge refugee populations. Currently there are 792,000 South Sudanese, 417,000 Congolese and more than 35,000 Burundians, among others. The $927 million sought would pay for water, sanitation, food, health care, shelter and other basic needs for the refugees. Jens Hessemann is the senior field coordinator for the U.N. refugee agency in Uganda.
“Uganda is Africa’s largest refugee situation of over 1.2 million refugees and the number is growing with continued influxes to the country. And over 100 partners, U.N. and NGO partners have been supporting the Uganda government in managing this humanitarian situation and deliver life saving services. That needs to continue,” said Hessemann.
However, the appeal is weighed down by what donors are calling unsatisfactory investigations over abuse of funds. In early 2018, four Ugandan officials under the Office of the Prime Minister were asked to leave their positions, pending investigations into alleged abuse of funds, fraud and exaggeration of refugee numbers.